Lightning storm fuels Oregon fires

An Oregon Army National Guard CH-47 Chinook helicopter with 1st Battalion, 168th Aviation Regiment dups a 2,000 gallon capacity Bambi Bucket amid smoke over the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness Area in order to support firefighting efforts on the Whitewater Fire on August 5, 2017. The Oregon National Guard was called upon following Gov. Kate Brown's emergency order on August 2, two Chinook helicopters are currently assigned to the fire. (Photo by Capt. Leslie Reed, Joint Force Headquarters Public Affairs).

Thunder and lightning rolled through the valley late on Thursday, and firefighters are now patrolling the area around Mount Jefferson searching for new fire starts.

The focus today is to reinforce fire lines and secure lightning caused fires from yesterday.

Fire meteorologists predict an increased chance of thunderstorms tonight, but there are chances of light showers over the weekend to temper the burn.

An increase in acreage yesterday resulted from the use of firing operations to manage fire intensity and control lines.

The Rebel fire continues to burn east of Eugene, and crews are working to contain potential growth and resistance.

This work involves falling dead standing trees, removing lower tree branches, as well as small trees and underbrush.

Due to the Rebel fire location, FSR 19 will be closed just south of Delta Campground entrance road and just north of the junction of FSR 19 and FSR 1944 near North Fork Trailhead.

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